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Oregonda | Average Guy Movie Review

Star Force Galactic Command is battling to protect Earth's solar system from the ruthless Draconian. When intel is obtained of a bio-weapon that could destroy humanity, the spacecraft Oregonda is dispatched on a top secret mission into enemy territory to retrieve evidence of the weapon's existence.

Watching Oregonda, it feels like a love letter to classic sci-fi. Everything from the practical sets to the clever use of visual effects, it's clear that this is a movie born out of love for the genre. As a story it sits somewhere between Star Trek and Stargate SG-1, as Captain Leila Collins (Leanne Johnson) and Major Remus Hughes (Eric Shook) head off into the vastness of space. The two leads share a good chemistry throughout, as their characters struggle with the danger of their mission, as well as the morality. Their conversation about trust and the need to withhold classified information also proves rather interesting. 

The thing that strikes you most, however, is the sense of loneliness that permeates the movie throughout - in much the same way it does for the crew of the Nostromo in Alien. Thanks to an 'up close and personal' shooting style and a brilliant score, there are times when that loneliness is almost overwhelming. It draws you in, and leaves you with a real sense of the bleak situation that Collins and Hughes find themselves in. There's no denying that Oregonda puts a less than cheery outlook on the idea of travelling through deep space, even without the presence of a hostile alien race. Thanks to some excellent set design, the interiors of the ship look incredible, although not exactly welcoming - much like the military and space vehicles of today. It may be home as well as transport, but the Oregonda has a rather authentic coldness to it. 

Unfortunately, this level of detail isn't applied to the villains. I would like to have seen more of the dreaded Draconian, who only get to make a brief appearance. It would certainly have been interesting to learn more about them, and their conflict with us. Sadly, they never really get the chance to be a truly sinister foe, despite Jeff Angel's best efforts - who seems to have had a lot of fun as the face of the evil empire. Even their unseen presence doesn't prove to be all that hair-raising. And some odd pacing in the second half means our heroes' mission can feel like a bit of a side note. In spite of this, Oregonda's intriguing (but likely, realistic) lack of hope or optimism allows the movie to keep you guessing until the very end, making it a rather engaging adventure into outer space. 

Despite an unfortunately absent villain, Oregonda proves to be an engaging adventure into outer space, and a heartfelt tribute to the sci-fi genre. 


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